Uniform and Flag

Yellow Shirt or Tan Shirt for Female Den Leaders?

Lorraine sent in this question:

What type of shirt do female den leaders wear? (yellow or tan)I want to get a shirt to wear so my Webelo Scouts understand and take pride in the uniform. (lead by example) I never had a shirt before, we are Webelo 1.

Thanks for the question Lorraine.  Female Cub Scout leaders may wear either the yellow shirt or the tan shirt. However, almost all of the den leaders I know wear the tan shirt.

Female Boy Scout leaders only wear the tan shirts. The yellow shirt is for Cub Scout leaderss. So if you purchase a tan shirt you can also continue to wear it when your son moves to a Boy Scout unit and you become a Boy Scout leader. 🙂

For that reason, I’d recommend you get the tan shirt.

And I commend you for wanting to be a good example in uniforming for your den. We can’t really expect the youth to wear the uniform if adults aren’t wearing it.

29 Responses to Yellow Shirt or Tan Shirt for Female Den Leaders?

  1. Liz December 3, 2015 at 8:32 PM #

    I wear a yellow shirt because it’s prettier and more flattering (tan is about the least flattering color a person can wear!) And when my son’s a boy scout, I really don’t want to continue being a leader anymore.

  2. Doe December 8, 2015 at 1:25 AM #

    I love wearing the YELLOW shirt. I get so many compliments! Also for special occasions like Pack meetings I like to wear a skirt and wear my hair in a nicer style. You wouldn’t think they would care but even young scouts notice and smile to see that I made a little effort 🙂

  3. Liz December 8, 2015 at 11:36 AM #

    That’s true Doe! A lot of women say they wish they’d known they could buy a yellow shirt before they’d bought their tan ones. It goes really nicely with the plaid skirt that I wear to the Christmas party. I love to wear a skirt and dress up and feel a little more feminine, especially to the B&G! (We spend enough time in jeans and boots on camping & hiking trips!)

  4. mary December 8, 2015 at 12:51 PM #

    I wear the yellow shirt, too. I service as our district’s Cub Program Leader.
    Plus, the yellow stands out in the crowd of tan.

  5. Laura December 15, 2015 at 3:00 PM #

    I personally wore the Tan shirt. Mainly because when I was smaller I wanted to be a boy scout they did so many cool things! So when I got the chance to wear one I really got in to it!

  6. Elizabeth December 21, 2015 at 7:38 PM #

    I wear the tan shirt because I was a Tiger, Wolf, Bear, Webelo and now an Assistant Scoutmaster… so the yellow shirt wouldn’t work for Assistant Scoutmaster. I have worn skirts or dress slacks with the tan shirt for banquets or Eagle ceremonies. It was a thrifty decision.

  7. Settummanque (Mike Walton) January 8, 2016 at 4:47 PM #

    Hey Elizabeth, Liz and Lorraine:

    Just a little nudge — whether we’re talking one or many, WEBELOS has an “s” at the end of it…without that, we don’t have anything for them to be Loyal to…(WE’ll BE LOyal Scouts!)

    *smiling*

    I personally love the gold (yellow) blouse for Cub Scouters and when I was a Den Leader Coach and Assistant Cubmaster, I wished that there was a male version of that blouse/top along with a blue version to match the Cub Scouts!!

    Like Mary stated, however, the yellow/gold tops tend to stand out in a crowd of blue, tan and green!!!

    Settummanque!

  8. Karen March 20, 2016 at 7:06 AM #

    I’ve worn the tan shirt for the past 3 years as a Wolf, Bear and Webelos 1 leader and I would love to continue volunteering with the Boy Scouts as my 3 sons grow.

  9. Dave May 13, 2016 at 8:30 PM #

    In our area the females in the community packs pretty much all wear the tan shirt and the females in the LDS packs wear the yellow shirt. I don’t think this was intended, just how it turned out.

  10. Amy May 31, 2016 at 11:56 AM #

    I wear a Tan womens also. I have noticed that they are shorter in length than the men’s. This makes it extremely hard to keep tucked in. I also notice many women wearing the tan shirts untucked. I have searched many BSA policies and cannot find anything stating that women’s shirts can or cannot be untucked….maybe we need to ASK BRYAN 🙂

    Any other leaders run into this situation reguarding tucked/untucked womens tan leader shirts?

  11. Dave June 4, 2016 at 2:08 PM #

    It became BSA policy in 2013 that all scout shirts are worn tucked in. Here in the Bryan on Scouting article with the BSA quote in it:

    http://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/10/09/tuck-everlasting-scout-uniform-shirts-should-always-be-tucked-in-bsa-says/

  12. Ron June 9, 2016 at 12:25 PM #

    my wife wore her yellow blouse and blue skirt as den leader and committee chair with our grandson that she wore with his dad and uncle many years ago. BSA is not about fashion. Just because there is a new clothing contractor to corporate BSA does not mean we all have to run out and buy new clothes.
    I’m happy that everything still fit!

  13. Ron June 9, 2016 at 1:11 PM #

    If a boy or leaders shirt isn’t tucked in, should they be thrown out of Scouting for fashion defiance?

  14. Sandra June 22, 2016 at 6:48 PM #

    Ron – no. Someone should be doing uniform inspections in each unit. Untucked shirts on boys or leaders costs the den points. I am a trainer at the district level and that is something I go over in classes. If leaders don’t set a good example, how can they expect the boys to have good habits?

    As for female leaders and their complaint that shirts don’t stay tucked in, mine stays tucked. Buying the right size is the first step. Tucking it in snugly and wearing a belt helps too. Finally, if it just won’t stay tucked, try sewing on an extension at the bottom. An extra few inches of fabric may work wonders.

    As for bottoms on females, I have seen some truly poor choices. Skin tight jeans, sloppy stretch fabric skirts, yoga pants, and low-rise pants are a few of the things I’ve seen that did not fit the idea of a Scout uniform. Please ladies, just get some cargo pants in an appropriate color for the top you choose or buy the official uniform pants. They are comfortable and durable.

  15. Ron June 22, 2016 at 7:43 PM #

    I’ve been a BOY scout leader for 30 years from den leader to district , council and Philmont. ITS ABOUT THE BOYS AND THE PROGRAM not fashion. Get real.

    • Jessica Kara June 27, 2016 at 4:18 PM #

      Thanks, Ron! You get it! I’m a Scout mom, former den leader, and possible future assistant Scoutmaster, and I wear the tan shirt untucked. With jeans or cargo pants. It looks just fine and not sloppy in any way. And, the more arbitrary rules like shirts being tucked in that we focus on, the further we move away from the actual goals of Scouting.

  16. Sandra June 27, 2016 at 9:19 PM #

    The uniform, worn properly, is part of the methods of Scouting. Should we discard all standards? Flag ceremonies can be tedious. How about shortcutting them? Perhaps we could abbreviate the Scout Law.

    There are traditions associated with Scouting and the uniform is one of them. A properly worn uniform should be a source of pride, not something to dismiss or complain about. When a Scout or a leader is sharply dressed it presents an image of someone who has respect for Scouting. It is a fact that boys who are in uniform have a different attitude than boys not in uniform or in a sloppy uniform. Leaders set the example.

    By flaunting the standards set by the BSA you are showing disregard for the rules and setting a poor example for the boys. In the realbworld, disregard of standards has consequences. If you were expected to wear a suit to work and showed up in jeans and a t-shirt, what impression would that make? What might be your supervisor’s reaction?

  17. Tonya June 30, 2016 at 3:24 PM #

    I struggle as a 4th year woman den leader regarding tucking in my tan shirt. The women’s shirts do seem shorter and every time I raise my arm it comes untucked. Depending on my self confidence that day is what seems to determine whether I tuck or leave untucked.
    I have considered going to the scout shop and trying on a male shirt? I’m also a heavier set woman and it’s very uncomfortable for me to tuck in my shirt. It seems more socially okay for men with bellys to tuck in their shirt-not women…lol!
    Honestly, I don’t think my boys even notice what I do with my shirt?!

  18. Ron Augustine July 1, 2016 at 5:01 PM #

    Moms…Cub Scouting is about a program for the boys, not fashion for you. Think about what your son will learn as a boy: #1 Does it really matter what style uniform you wear? The head of the company that I worked for was a retired Navy Admiral, he told me about his memories as a young Cub Scout and their adventures, not about fashion. IT’S ABOUT YOUR SON, NOT YOU

  19. Ron Augustine July 1, 2016 at 5:11 PM #

    they are children, they have no idea about what you are wearing. (give them a few years) they want a Cub Scout program. Give them advancements.

  20. Sandra July 2, 2016 at 2:38 PM #

    That’s funny. I just asked my 9 and 6 year old grandsons if they noticed whether leaders wore their uniforms correctly. They both said they did and that leaders look sloppy if they don’t tuck their shirts. They also said that when leaders look neat it makes them want to look neat too. I have had boys ask me why they have to wear their uniforms a certain way if adults don’t. So the boys do notice! It’s rather like if kids see you pick your nose or hear you use vulgar language they will follow your example. If wearing the uniform and following the rules is so very difficult or objectionable to you, perhaps Scouting is incompatible with your values.

  21. Rachel September 4, 2016 at 11:12 PM #

    Some of these responses are not feeling very helpful and kind…

    As a female den leader for cubs, I can definitely feel the pain of the tan shirts not always staying tucked in or being very user friendly for all tasks. I went with tan mainly because that is what everyone else wore and the yellow shirts were not available at our scouting store when I went looking for my shirt.

    I definitely think that the Class A tan shirts have their place, but I also think that Packs should be considering a Class B shirt option for some events. Our pack has a Class B t-shirt which is navy and has the scouting emblem on the back and “I did my best” on the front. Our scouts are welcome to wear these shirts during weekly den meetings (not pack award meetings), when we are doing volunteer work, when we are hiking, when we are camping out…etc. They are expected to wear Class A when attending more formal pack events including award meetings, flag ceremonies, etc. This option is open to the leaders as well which can make for a more comfortable option for some activities.

  22. Elizabeth September 24, 2016 at 8:30 AM #

    Every spring, we make our own tie-dyed pack t-shirts. It is a really fun den activity, and we have everyone in the family make their own, including sisters and parents, because in the summertime our activities are very family-oriented, things like kickball games, or family camping trips. The t-shirts are SO much more comfortable than the uniform shirts, which are very uncomfortable when it’s over 75 degrees or so.

  23. Debra October 26, 2016 at 10:58 AM #

    I am looking for the Ladies Scout Skirt but can not find it anywhere on line or in a Scout Shop can anyone help me locate one?

  24. Linda February 3, 2017 at 10:01 AM #

    I’d like to be compliant, but I don’t look good or feel comfortable when I tuck my shirts in. I’m a volunteer, and I don’t think wearing an untucked shirt will make a difference to the boys, but it does make a difference to me! I don’t like to go out in public feeling uncomfortable with what I’m wearing! I will set an example of wearing the uniform, but I won’t set the example of tucking it in! Cub Scouts is not the military!

  25. Tough Love April 21, 2017 at 5:57 PM #

    Linda,
    Thank you for being a volunteer! That said, do not let your own vanity get in the way of doing what is right. The idea of a uniform is that it is “uniform”, that is, the same for everyone.

    There is a purpose to the uniform, and that is to make everyone see that they are part of the same “team” part of the Scouting movement.

    When folks flaunt the uniform code, they are signaling that they think they are more special than all the others. This comes at the expense of building unit cohesion. If everyone thought that way, there might as well not be uniforms. Yet, from sports teams, to corporate wear, a standard uniform has the purpose of unifying and identifying those who are on the team. Do you remember the “Red Hat Club” for women? What about the P*ssy Hats at the woman’s march against Trump? All these are signaling devices of unity.

    Uni = “One” -form = “Way” —– Uniform = One Way.

    Get over yourself. If you want to be a volunteer then wear the uniform properly.

    Or don’t wear it at all and make sure you tell everyone that you are completely justified in thinking you are better than everyone else, and smarter too, since they are too stupid to put with wearing their uniform properly.

    Signed, Tough Love

  26. Michelle linscott September 14, 2017 at 5:56 PM #

    Tough Love, our post started out as constructive and then went downhill from there. What point you were making was lost after the 2nd paragraph.

    I believe that the female shirts were originally cut and designed to not be tucked in, ( and yes it is the right size and is not at all tight, if I go the next size up the short sleeves are to my elbows and Still do not gain much length in the body) The female shirt I have is too short to tuck and has a finished hem and open finished seam about 2 inches up the side like most women’s civilian blouses are cut to wear untucked. I was in the military and we had a Dress uniform option of a shirt that was cut to wear untucked with a cut and finished hem very similar to the BSA female uniform shirt.

    If the BSA wants the female leaders to wear a tucked in uniform then the female cut shirts need to be made with a longer tail so it can be tucked. I am an larger woman, I am 5’11” and have a terrible time finding a shirt that is broad enough in the shoulders and long enough to tuck in. If I buy a men’s shirt I end up swimming in the one that fits around my chest.

    I would also like to remind a few of the men on this board that if women want something that is cut to comfortably fit this is not unreasonable. Men’s shirts fit, women’s should too. My troop would not be able to participate in campouts etc if it wasn’t for our female volunteers. We struggle to find enough dads to be involved at times to ensure the 2 adult minimum at all our activities. Like it or not the BSA needs women to be involved and we deserve uniform tops that are cut to tuck in, if that is the way the BSA wants the uniform worn then, they need to offer a shirt that is cut to easily tuck in and stay tucked.

  27. Sarah Sollars October 28, 2017 at 12:51 PM #

    hi all! New Den Leader mom here for a Tiigers den. I’m not sure if this was okay to do, but..
    I bought a Mens Tan Shirt in a medium and had a seamstress take in the sides so it was less “pillow case” like and that way it was long enough to tuck into whatever I was wearing without creating extra poof all over. I still had trouble keeping it tucked in today being active with my den at our second meeting, but really am glad I bought the mens.. more room in the shoulder/ and longer length. I got the blue tiger leader scarf, and wore it with jeans today. I think it would still be great to wear with dress pants/ skirt in our formal pack meeting.

  28. Sarah Sollars October 28, 2017 at 12:53 PM #

    oh I should have also mentioned my seamstress hemmed my sleeves to mid upper-arm.. otherwise it would have been past my elbows.

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